Tokyo Vice

by Jake Adelstein


2022 Sep 10


Jake Adelstein is the only American journalist ever to have been admitted to the insular Tokyo Metropolitan Police Press Club, where for twelve years he covered the dark side of Japan: extortion, murder, human trafficking, fiscal corruption, and of course, the yakuza. But when his final scoop exposed a scandal that reverberated all the way from the neon soaked streets of Tokyo to the polished Halls of the FBI and resulted in a death threat for him and his family, Adelstein decided to step down. Then, he fought back.

In Tokyo Vice he delivers an unprecedented look at Japanese culture and searing memoir about his rise from cub reporter to seasoned journalist with a price on his head.

Notes & Highlights

Chapter 15 - Evening Flowers

The Japanese have words for sadness that are so subtle and complicated that the English translations don’t do them justice.
Setsunai is usually translated as “sad,” but it is better described as a feeling of sadness and loneliness so powerful that it feels as if your chest is constricted, as if you can’t breathe; a sadness that is physical and tangible. There is another word, too—yarusenai, which is grief or loneliness so strong that you can’t get rid of it, you can’t clear it away.

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Tokyo Vice by Jake Adelstein